The Workers’ Party have said the government must back the Digital Sales Tax, proposed by the European Commission, if they are serious about taxing mega-corporations.

The turnover tax would involve taxing all digital transactions in the country in which they take place, as opposed to just the profits the companies in question record at the end of a year.

Cllr. Éilis Ryan, who will run for MEP in Dublin next May, said:
“One thing that should at this point be abundantly clear, is that rooting the Irish economy in tax breaks for mega-corporations has proved unstable and incapable of delivering an equal society and decent public services. It’s time we move to a new, more secure economic model.

“The digital turnover tax makes absolute sense to everyone except those whose primary objective is defending the right of Apple, Google and Facebook to pay tax.”

Cllr. Ryan continued:
“Tech giants make money in many places they don’t have a physical presence, and this must of course be taxed properly in those places. It is ludicrous for Ireland to play the role of defending Apple and Google’s right to transfer profits into Ireland, and account for them in a way that minimises their tax bills.

“Furthermore, because the proposed tax is a tax on turnover, and not just profits, it allows us to tax the money actually made by these mega-companies – and not just the profits they choose to report to us following complex accounting processes.”

Cllr. Ryan concluded:
“It is disappointing to once again see cross-party unity, stretching from Fine Gael to Sinn Féin, in opposing European attempts to tax corporations properly. Multinational companies do not respect national borders. If we want to tax them effectively, we need to work across national borders to do so.

“That’s why a Europe-wide proposal makes sense.”